Airs Friday, January 4 at 12:00 noon In December of 1891, Czech composer Antonin Dvorak accepted the offer of Jeanette Thurber to become the director of the National Academy of Music in New York City. Mrs. Thurber hoped that the conservatory, which she founded in 1885, would foster the development of American concert music. It was Dvorak's opinion that the future music of America must be based on its folk melodies, which would serve as the real foundation of any serious and original school of composition in the United States. The first half of this special features a performances of Dvorak's music by the Emerson String Quartet, including the String Quartet No. 10 in E-flat Major Opus 51 and the String Quartet No. 12 in F Major Opus 96 ("The American"). Dvorak’s final two quartets, with their mastery of form, color and expression,are a fitting summation of Dvorak's exceptional achievement in this genre. On the 2nd half of this special we’ll hear the Emerson Quartet performed the Cypresses for string Quartet and his Opus 105, the 13th quartet written by Dvorak.